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Monday 18 December 2017

Di Matteo signs two-year deal at Bridge

ROBERTO Di Matteo admitted his pride at being appointed Chelsea boss on a full-time basis last night.

The 42-year-old, a fan favourite during his playing days at Stamford Bridge, was confirmed as the latest manager to take the helm at Stamford Bridge, on a two-year deal.

The announcement came just three weeks after Di Matteo, as interim boss, guided the club to arguably their greatest triumph in the Champions League final in Munich.

In beating Bayern Munich on penalties, Di Matteo completed a remarkable rejuvenation that saw him also claim the FA Cup.

Those successes left Blues fans calling for his permanent appointment and owner Roman Abramovich has now shelved plans to woo Pep Guardiola out of his year-long sabbatical after leaving Barcelona.

While Di Matteo, who becomes the eighth permanent boss of Abramovich's ownership, said he would have accepted the club's decision should they have opted to look elsewhere, he admitted his joy at being able to continue his "legacy" after Chelsea's stunning end to last season.

"I respect any decision the club was going to make but I'm proud my legacy with this club continues," he said.

Overhaul

"I'm enjoying the break now and planning for next season - and looking at the squad. We've signed a couple of players. There will be a little bit of a change but not a complete overhaul of the squad.

"We want to do better in the Premier League - last season was difficult for us in the league - and to continue our success in cup competitions."

Di Matteo will aim to better a sixth-place finish in the league last term and the club have already signed new players.

Eden Hazard has arrived from Lille with Germany midfielder Marko Marin also joining. And Porto striker Hulk is reportedly close to a deal.

Chelsea chief executive Ron Gourlay said Di Matteo was "the right man to lead Chelsea onto further success".

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